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Enzo Ferrari Museum workshop

02 AprAuto Veloci: The Enzo Ferrari Museum in Italy


The Enzo Ferrari Museum in Italy is the perfect highlight of food and auto touring in Italy. Although the town features…

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Lemay family Collection car museum Tacoma

06 FebFilled to the rafters at the LeMay Family Collection in Tacoma


The LeMay Family Collection grew out of the automotive obsession of one man, Harold LeMay. He grew up as a humble…

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National Packard Museum Warren Ohio Caribbean Car

14 JanThe National Packard Museum in Warren, Ohio


It’s easy to figure out why there’s a National Packard Museum in Warren, Ohio. The Packard brothers started out in Warren…

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Enzo Ferrari Museum workshop

Auto Veloci: The Enzo Ferrari Museum in Italy

The Enzo Ferrari Museum in Italy is the perfect highlight of food and auto touring in Italy. Although the town features...

Lemay family Collection car museum Tacoma

Filled to the rafters at the LeMay Family Collection in Tacoma

The LeMay Family Collection grew out of the automotive obsession of one man, Harold LeMay. He grew up as a humble...

National Packard Museum Warren Ohio Caribbean Car

The National Packard Museum in Warren, Ohio

It’s easy to figure out why there’s a National Packard Museum in Warren, Ohio. The Packard brothers started out in Warren...

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April 2, 2018 in Italy, Museums

Auto Veloci: The Enzo Ferrari Museum in Italy

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February 6, 2018 in Museums, Washington

Filled to the rafters at the LeMay Family Collection in Tacoma

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January 14, 2018 in Museums, Ohio

The National Packard Museum in Warren, Ohio

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Enzo Ferrari Museum workshop

The Enzo Ferrari Museum in Italy is the perfect highlight of food and auto touring in Italy. Although the town features quaint cobblestoned streets and ancient churches, it’s known as the “Detroit of Italy” due to its automotive heritage. It’s the center of the Motor Valley where Ferrari, Maserati, and Lamborghini automobiles, along with Ducati motorcycles, are built. Located in the Emilia-Romagna region 250 miles north of Rome, visitors can tour factories and museums related to these legendary marques.

Enzo Ferrari Museum in Italy

Italians might make their foods slowly, but their cars are fast. Modena is the birthplace of Enzo Ferrari, whose bright red, road-hugging vehicles seem synonymous with the word “racecar.” Start your Motor Valley tour at the Museo Enzo Ferrari in Modena.

Enzo Ferrari Museum in Italy

You’ll walk in the legendary carmaker’s footsteps at his original workshop and home (in true “live fast” style, Ferrari inherited the house at age 20, but sold it soon afterward to buy a sports car) while getting up close to the first road Ferrari ever built, a 1947 Ferrari 125 S, and over 30 high-performance engines.

 

Adjacent to the workshop a newer building’s striking yellow roof curves skyward, mimicking the hood of a 1950s racing Ferrari. Inside, over 20 Ferraris are displayed under glittery lights as if they were jewels in a crown, although these Italian creations are more expensive than most diamonds. A soaring Pavarotti soundtrack creates a sense of autos as art and gets you in the mood for the next stop of the day. www.MuseoModena.Ferrari.com

Even for non-opera buffs visiting the Luciano Pavarotti House Museum is a fascinating experience; sort of like Graceland with an Italian twist. The house where he lived for the final years of his life is set on a bucolic one-lane road outside his childhood hometown of Modena.

Ferrari Museum Marinello

Ferrari moved production to nearby Maranello in the 1940s. There, the Museo Ferrari focuses more on performance with a dose of heritage thrown in. The visitor’s path winds its way through Ferrari Formula 1 race cars up to the “One-Off” gallery that includes Eric Clapton’s SP12EC (shown below). Make sure to enjoy the museum; the only way to see where the Ferraris are actually built is to buy one. www.MuseoMaranello.Ferrari.com

Eric Clapton's Ferrari

After viewing primo cars, Modena is a great place to reward yourself with a fine Italian meal: it’s the town that invented tortellini pasta and the eponymous balsamic vinegar di Modena.

Visiting the Enzo Ferrari Museum in Italy

With so much to see and do in Modena it can be a bit overwhelming at first. Fortunately there is a means of easily visiting many attractions within a few days. Discover Ferrari & Pavarotti Land is a shuttle service that whisks visitors to over a dozen sights related to food, wine, history and cars with a stop thrown in at Pavarotti’s home. More information at www.FerrariPavarottiLand.it.

Lemay family Collection car museum Tacoma

LeMay Family Collection EdselThe LeMay Family Collection grew out of the automotive obsession of one man, Harold LeMay. He grew up as a humble farm boy, served in World War II, then returned to Tacoma to start what became one of the largest privately owned rubbish-hauling companies in the country. When his collection topped 3,000 vehicles, it was listed in the Guinness Book of Records as the world’s “Largest Antique and Vintage Vehicle Collection.” The museum sprawls across the former home of the Marymount Military Academy, with cars and memorabilia tucked into every possible corner, including the former showers and indoor rifle range.

LeMay Family Collection car museum

Tours of several of the buildings are led by knowledgeable volunteers who are passionate about cars. One of the things that make the LeMay Family Collection unique is its wide range of vehicles on display. Tucked in between the showstoppers are ordinary cars from yesteryear; it’s almost like walking across a supermarket parking lot around the year 1972. The collection doesn’t stop at cars; there are also fire trucks, wreckers, tractors, and buses on display.

In the White Building, vehicles are stacked in so tightly that some are on three-tiered racks. Despite the inconvenience of displaying them, they are exchanged frequently with hundreds of cars in off-site storage so those can be seen, too.

LeMay Family Collection car museum

A Soviet-built 1974 Gaz Chaika Limousine sits next to a U.S.-made 1955 Packard on which it was modeled, highlighting the progress (or lack thereof) of the Soviet automotive industry. The Chaika was so out of style that it’s probably the only 1970s car that sported tail fins. The 1948 Tucker has a special story: It’s the one car that always got away from Harold LeMay. In a closing of the circle, his family purchased it after his death.

Tailfin at LeMay Museum at Marymount

I’m always trying to find my first car, a 1975 Pontiac Firebird, in a museum. Here they had a ’74 and a ’76, so that was close enough to relive my glory days. TV/film cars include a 1969 Charger “General Lee” from The Dukes of Hazzard; the 1948 DeSoto Suburban Sedan that was the Cunningham family car on Happy Days; and a 1986 Cadillac Brougham that was used as a presidential limo in The American President and In the Line of Fire.

Edsel at LeMay car museum

A special event occurs on the last Saturday in August, when shuttle buses take visitors a few miles to the LeMay family home; there, another 200+(!) vehicles are on display. Believe it or not, the family is still adding to the collection. NAAM member.

To see more autos that were owned by LeMay, visit the LeMay-America’s Car Museum that was created with a sizable gift of cars from the LeMay family.

Visiting the LeMay Family Collection

Number of vehicles: 500+     Highlights: 1948 Tucker (#7 of 51); 1959 Opel P-1 that set a record for 376 mpg (that’s miles per gallon, not mph); 1976 Chevrolet Vega Cosworth; 1938 Graham Custom 97. Note: For more about the Opel, go to www.376mpg.com.

Location: 325 152nd Street, Tacoma, WA 98445. About eight miles south of LeMay–America’s Car Museum.

Hours: Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Regularly scheduled tours of about two hours run throughout the day.

Phone: (253) 272-2336   Web: www.LeMayMarymount.org

Here’s the link for more stories about classic car museums.

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